Which Factories Have the Worst Environmental Impact? Ministry Publishes "Red List" for 2016
The annual Environmental Impact Index presents the environmental risks of public and governmental Israeli companies. The index rates more than 100 industrial factories and some 1,000 gas stations, in terms of impact on the environment, compliance to environmental laws, and environmental management. The "red list" includes the companies that top the list; this year’s top five are: ORL, Paz Ashdod Oil Refinery, Gadiv Petrochemicals, Carmel Olefins, and Rotem Amfert Negev. For the first time ever, the Ministry of Environmental Protection (MoEP) has published the data on an interactive map (available in Hebrew only).

2016 Red List

​The Environmental Impact Index of public companies in Israel provides the public with information on the environmental performance and risks of public companies and factories with a large environmental impact. It looks in depth at more than 40 companies, about 100 factories, and about 1,000 gas stations. The index is simple to understand and allows for comparisons between companies. The index is the first of its kind to offer information from a governmental source on environmental risk levels of companies, and provides investors in public companies with a simple and direct indication of their level of risk.

Environmental Protection Minister Zeev Elkin: "We are enabling every citizen in Israel and every investor to get a full picture of the companies that are environmentally risky in Israel, with reliable and accessible information. The Ministry of Environmental Protection is working to increase environmental transparency on several levels, and calls on investors to assess a company’s risks using this environmental information, in order to help propel public companies to reduce their negative impact on the environment."

The top 10 companies on the 2016 Index "red list," which rates companies performances and risks for 2015:

  1. Oil Refineries Ltd
  2. Paz Ashdod Oil Refinery
  3. Gadiv Petrochemical Industries
  4. Carmel Olefins
  5. Rotem Amfert Negev
  6. Hadera Papers
  7. Adama Agricultural Solutions
  8. Dead Sea Works
  9. the Israel Electric Corp’s Rutenberg power station
  10. Dead Sea Magnesium

Prominent Findings of the 2016 Index

  1. 6 out of 10 factories on last year’s red list subsequently reduced air emissions.
  2. Oil Refineries Ltd (ORL) tops the Index, with a score that is 27% higher than last year, due to violations in supervision and enforcement.
  3. Two other ORL companies are in the top 10 this year: Gadiv Petrochemical Industries (3rd place) and Carmel Olefins (4th place), with increases from last year of 100% and 48% respectively, due to violations in supervision and enforcement.
  4. In 2015, there was a 5% increase in the detection of environmental violations in factories rated in the Index, as a result of a significant increase (more than 45%) in the MoEP’s supervision and enforcement of large industrial companies.
  5. There was no change between 2014 and 2015 in score for emissions to the air, soil, rivers, and oceans, or for waste transfers.
  6. The Paz Lubricants and Chemicals factory in Haifa showed the most significant improvement since last year’s Index, with a 58% reduction in points. The plant dropped from 12th to 47th place, due to improved compliance with environmental law.
  7. Among the fuel companies, Sonol achieved the most significant improvement, with a cumulative reduction of 90% in its score over the last two years.


It should be noted that in 2015, the MoEP issued 29 warnings to ORL, for exceeding permitted emissions values of: nitrogen oxides, organic carbon, carbon monoxide, and particulate matter between the years 2012 and 2015. An additional warning was issued due to the failure to conduct proper checks on fuel lines for a number of years, which resulted in a fuel oil leakage in 2014. On top of that, in 2015, seven smokestacks were found not suitable for sampling in accordance with the MoEP’s chimney sampling procedures.

ORL was also convicted of water pollution offenses in 2015, following the discharge of untreated sewage into the Kishon River during a 2010 storm. The Index includes other violations that took place in 2013 and 2014.

See the list of companies with the worst environmental performance, most improved companies, companies with largest point increase, and more.

Scoring Methodology and Components

The Environmental Impact Index equation is based on the UK’s Operational Risk Appraisal (OPRA), through which the UK government assesses environmental risk and determines how to allocate its regulatory resources.

​A company’s "score" on the Environmental Impact Index is determined by:

  1. Impact on the environment. This includes three components: annual releases of pollutants or waste that are emitted or transferred into the atmosphere, use of hazardous materials, and location of the facility
  2. Lack of compliance to environmental laws and regulations
  3. Environmental management and reporting